Righteousness Sermon - Pastor Steve Winter

This is my text that I used for tonight's 4/03/2004 sermon
It should be available in audio format at
http://www.apostolic.biz/audio

James 5:16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

There are many benefits from God for the righteous. Many got their names in the Bible because God found them to be righteous

Genesis 7:1 And the LORD said unto Noah, Come thou and all thy house into the ark; for thee have I seen righteous before me in this generation.

Think about this next one in light of current events. Some wonder how God can keep from destroying the world because of the rampant sin.

Genesis 18:20 And the LORD said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous;
21 I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, which is come unto me; and if not, I will know.
22 And the men turned their faces from thence, and went toward Sodom: but Abraham stood yet before the LORD.
23 ∂ And Abraham drew near, and said, Wilt thou also destroy the righteous with the wicked?
24 Peradventure there be fifty righteous within the city: wilt thou also destroy and not spare the place for the fifty righteous that are therein?
25 That be far from thee to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: and that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?
26 And the LORD said, If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare all the place for their sakes.

Abraham continued his negotiations with the God of the universe.

Genesis 18:32 And he said, Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak yet but this once: Peradventure ten shall be found there. And he said, I will not destroy it for tenís sake.

Consider this! Sodom would have been spared if there could have been found 10
rightous people.

Psalms 5:12 For thou, LORD, wilt bless the righteous; with favour wilt thou compass him as with a shield.

What is this "rightousness" thing? It carries a lot of weight with God!

Psalms 1:5 Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.

We see that righteousness includes freedom from sin.

Psalms 1:6 For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.

We see that rightousness includes godliness.

Psalms 7:9 Oh let the wickedness of the wicked come to an end; but establish the just: for the righteous God trieth the hearts and reins.

Psalms 11:7 For the righteous LORD loveth righteousness; his countenance doth behold the upright.

We see that rightousness cannot be faked.

Psalms 32:11 Be glad in the LORD, and rejoice, ye righteous: and shout for joy, all ye that are upright in heart.

The righteous are upright in heart.

Psalms 34:15 The eyes of the LORD are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry.
16 The face of the LORD is against them that do evil, to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.
17 The righteous cry, and the LORD heareth, and delivereth them out of all their troubles.

Righteousness does not mean freedom from troubles or afflictions or persecution
or hatred.

Psalms 34:19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all.

Psalms 34:21 Evil shall slay the wicked: and they that hate the righteous shall be desolate.

There is a price to pay for hating the righteous.

Psalms 37:25 I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread.

Proverbs 10:24 The fear of the wicked, it shall come upon him: but the desire of the righteous shall be granted.

Some think that those living for God are in some sort of bondage. The God of this world has blinded them.

What is righteousness?

1 John 3:7 Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous.
8 He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.
9 Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.
10 In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother.

Revelation 22:11 He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still.

Your righteousness is determined simply by what you use your God given free will
to do and you cannot be righteous without the Holy Ghost.

Romans 14:17 For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.
18 For he that in these things serveth Christ is acceptable to God, and approved of men.

Psalms 15:1 ∂ <<A Psalm of David.>> LORD, who shall abide in thy tabernacle? who shall dwell in thy holy hill?
2 He that walketh uprightly, and worketh righteousness, and speaketh the truth in his heart.
3 He that backbiteth not with his tongue, nor doeth evil to his neighbour, nor taketh up a reproach against his neighbour.

Pastor Winter